In the day since Peyton was very ceremoniously cast off by the Colts, we’ve learned that Pey-Pey reportedly plans to pick his new home within a week and that he would prefer to remain in the AFC. So far, 12 teams have inquired about signing him. Of those, we can surmise some obvious suitors, while a mysterious few remain unclear. We’ll allow other pundits to tackle mundane things like “who could be most helped by Peyton’s services, assuming his NeckAIDS clears up?”, or “where would he make the best fit?” or “does this even make sense?”. Our concern is, and will always be, which scenario creates the greatest potential for mockery and embarrassment for all concerned. Of the likely – or even remotely possible – destinations, we rank the 10 best for the purposes of KSK schadenfreude:
1. Washington Redskins – Please let it be so. And please let Manning receive no less than $50 million guaranteed. And have Peyton be injured on the opening possession Week 1 so the Sex Cannon has to resume starting for another season.
UPDATE: It’s being reported that Peyton’s already shot down the ‘Skins. Sally Jenkins is devastated. It really is a shame, unless it’s a clever ploy to pry another $70 million out of Snyder, which we all hope and pray it is.
2. New York Jets – Sure, we’d have to listen to countless stories of how Peyton and Eli are vying for the affection of the Big Apple, but there’s enough potential for hilarity to compensate. Peyton trying to co-exist with Rex Ryan alone makes tantalizing. Meanwhile, Nacho, freed from the responsibility of pretending to quarterback, is free to tag all the underage tail in the tri-state area.
3. Denver Broncos – The Tebowtards would assassinate Peyton before we even got to the draft. A holy war could spice up the off-season. What do you think?
4. Philadelphia Eagles – Not going to happen, but just the thought of Peyton being subject to the immense cruelty and self-loathing of Philly sports fans would be a dream come true. Every other fan base would suck up to him. And, sure, Philly fans might initially, until he loses a game or two, then the flying batteries have a very large cranial target.
5. Kansas City Chiefs – KC has a decorated recent history of failure in the postseason and few fan bases could be more devastated by a trademark gangbusters regular season leading to playoff collapse.
6. Miami Dolphins – Miami could be once scenario where I’d actually be happy to see Peyton succeed. You get to see Dan Marino poorly suppress his fuming from the CBS studio and, assuming the Heat screw the pooch in the postseason again this year, the Dolphins would upstage LeBron and co. As for Peyton embarrassment, I’ll assume Gloria Estefan and J-Lo will force him to speak Spanish for Latino fan outreach, which will be the best.
7. Tennessee Titans – The jilted feelings of Jake Locker are of little concern to us, but at least we’ll know Peyton is forestalling a franchise’s future with his presence. Plus, we’d get the see all the Vawls alums who pledged NFL loyalty to the Colts when Indy drafted Peyton come back into the home fold, only for them to abandon the Titans again when Peyton leaves.
8. Seattle Seahawks – Pete Carroll’s boyish exuberance would certainly get on Peyton’s nerves in amusing ways. And Pey-Pey would have to try to communicate with Marshawn Lynch, which could be an adventure all its own. “GODDAMMIT, BEEF MOE!” Downside: Peter King attributing any potential Peyton success to consistent lattes.
9. Arizona Cardinals – The Bidwills pony up with the money to pay Peyton, but regret to inform him that if he wants to watch game tape, he’ll have to provide his own cameras, film, screening room and (in the fine print) new team headquarters to house the screening room.
10. San Francisco 49ers – Eh. I’d have to respect Alex Smith before I’d be entertained by his getting screwed over.
We’d like to include the Jaguars for the possibility of Peyton leading a division foe to an AFC South title against the Colts, but no way Peyton would be willing to live in Jacksonville. We’ll give him that much credit.